CU-Boulder to help improve wind forecasting in $2.5M DOE project

By: InnovatioNews Tuesday January 13, 2015 0 comments Tags: ATOC, Boulder, CU-Boulder, DOE, Julie Lundquist, Vaisala


University of Colorado logoBOULDER - A $2.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to a coalition of organizations, including the University of Colorado-Boulder, will be used to help researchers improve wind energy forecasting in mountain and valley regions.

The grant is being led by Vaisala, a Finland-based company with offices in Louisville that specializes in environmental and industrial measurements.

The research will focus on ways to improve the wind energy industry's weather models for short-term wind forecasts, CU said.

Better forecasting will help integrate wind-generated electricity into the power grid, according to Julie Lundquist, CU-Boulder project leader and assistant professor in the Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences (ATOC).

"We will be making an unprecedented number of measurements in and around wind farms, specifically to understand the meteorology in complex terrain as a way to improve the reliability of forecasts," Lundquist said.

"We will also be measuring how large wind farms impact the weather in their local environments."

CU-Boulder students will use advanced meteorological equipment - including wind-sensing lasers - to analyze wind patterns in the Columbia River Gorge region of Washington and Oregon.

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